Intent: We wanted to make a flower that can open and close depending on if the person inhales or exhales air. It mirrors the person’s state of relaxation, and, if the person has longer inhale then exhale, the air accumulated in the flower will be pumped out automatically, showing its own relaxation.

Implementation: We used two motors, one to inflate the flower and one to deflate the flower. Yumeng also has a variable resistance fabric material from another class that is stretchable. We wanted to add the material to her stomach area so when she inhales, the fabric stretches and the motor that inflates would run. When she exhales, the fabric goes back to its original shape and the motor that deflates would run. After 6 seconds of idle time, if the air in the flower is more than 2/3 of its max capacity, that flower will deflate to under that threshold. We wanted to make a little jacket for the flower where the two sides look different and would show once inflated.

Successes: We were able to make the flower (similar to the pyramid actuator). We were also able to code the motors so that they would inflate and deflate according to the stretchiness of the fabric. We were also able to write code to track the current volume of air in the flower so that it doesn’t pop the flower. The maximum volume of the flower was determined by pumping air in at full speed and record the number of seconds at desired shape.

Failures: There were holes in the flower causing air to leak before the person would exhale. The jacket we made was also slightly smaller than the flower and was too heavy causing the movements to not show. Also, only one side of the fabric stretches so this idea was not really successful. We later changed the fabric to something light and attachable to the ends of the flower petals.